A hunger for self improvement is a natural part of the human experience. The need to move, grow and then procreate to develop DNA, is the fundamental law that creates the conscious experience. It is represented in sacred geometry through the flower of life and expressed through the continual expansion of the universe. All life and energy, moves to find it’s edges and then expands them.
This hunger brought mankind fire, wheels, electricity, and the modern day developments that have now allowed our physical needs to be met. This evolutionary stage, has created room for expansion of our minds and social bieng to be our primary focus. We’ve created complex social structures, virtual cyber realities, mystical novels, music of unlimited genres, and developed practises such as hypnosis and psychotherapy.
In the gaps to fill our desire for self improvement, space for the control of advertising, consumerism, social conditioning and negative memory recall also has formed. Features of the human experience that are often responsible for anxiety, depression, obsessive compulsive disorders and general societal unhappiness. Our brains, originally designed for a species that survived in brutal nature, are programmed to use visual cues to dictate decisions, always feel like they need ‘more’ because food sources were not consistent. In primal times remembering every possibly danger and calculating potential threats in new environments was vital.
Often we can feel stupid for having anxieties or sadness. There have been many times when I have felt so ridiculous because I’ve been unhappy, and I’ve blamed myself. In my privileged western life of travel and creativity, how can still feel like a massive failure?
I am a believer in the law of attraction and in the belief that we get to choose our mindsets and create our realities. When I feel down, it’s easy to beat myself up…. because I don’t understand why I would have chosen to make decisions that make me unhappy. I don’t understand why I have chosen to listen to anxious/negative thoughts, or made decisions based on impulses to eat unhealthy food, or self harming behaviour. I don’t understand why I don’t love myself. Even though I know I can choose too, and I can beat myself up for it.
In these times the most common thought that pops into my head is the thought of ‘Need.’’
“I need rest.” “I need food.” “I need to get out of here.” “I need to meditate.” “I need to talk to this person.” “I need to sort this” “I need space.” “I need to stop eating this.” “I need to start thinking this way.” “I need to sleep.” “I need to learn to love myself.” “I need to stick through this.”… ECT
This “Need” word, and method of thinking, leaves me feeling exhausted before I’ve even taken any steps to help my situation. Often tiredness from doing nothing, is a common symptom of anxiety, stress and depression. This way of thinking also implies that how I am isn’t enough, it taps into my reptilian brain that believes that I’m going to run out of something and I’m going to be in danger.
When I think this way, even though the intention is always good, I’ve realised that I’m actually more likely to do the opposite, because I can’t relax. The thought is punishing, negative and harmful. For example, if you are lying in bed thinking about how you need to sleep, the chances are you are not going to fall anytime soon.
This is because, when you thinking about a ‘need’ you are also thinking about a lack of something. There is a universal law that we attract what we are. Water blends into water. Happy moods attract happy energies. You fall in love, mostly when you feel in love with life. Life inspires you, when you are feeling creative. You are beautiful, when you feel beautiful.
However if you are thinking about a lack, the energy you are attracting is a lack. If your thinking about a lack of sleep, you’re actually thinking about keeping yourself awake. Thinking about a lack of social connection? Your acknowledging ‘empty spaces’ in your life, and most likely going to imagine more in the future which will encourage you to act in a way that reinforces that thought.
There are three basic laws that dictate the subconscious brain. I am sure that I have touched on them in other blog posts and I would like to mention them again.
- The subconscious brain only thinks in the present. The physical sensations you feel if you think about a horrible thing that happened previously and if you worry about a future event, will be the same as if the event was current.
- The subconscious brain only thinks in images and doesn’t understand the word no. For example if you think “I will eat no more KFC.” The symbol you suddenly see in your mind’s images, or physical sensations are related to KFC. Maybe you see chips, or are starting to salivate, and then your body now wants fried food. (Sorry!!)
- The subconscious brain dictated by trained habits. It takes training from our conscious mind to create the actions that come from our subconscious. It takes 21 consistent days to start the foundation for a new habit. For example if you are often thinking about how much you enjoy chocolate, at meal times, as a craving when your bored and on a daily basis, you are much more likely to accidentally eat that entire bar by accident when you are presented with chocolate, because your mind has been trained to believe that it is enjoyable for you.
It is important for you observe your thoughts and notice an repetitive motions that despite trying to help you, are actually hindering you.
I sat down with a friend, who listened to me talking (breaking down) about my overwhelming life problems recently, and when I stopped speaking, she didn’t discuss them with me and instead told me to switch any thought of ‘need’ into ‘I want to…’, ‘I am excited to …’ and ‘It is important to me to…’ and then I’d find my answers… “Change your words. Change your life.”
It overwhelmed me how quickly I began to stop procrastinating and start acting on impulses that make my quality of life better and my happiness grow. I found more truth in my actions, I was not doing things that I once felt I had to, but following my rhythm and felt satisfied not only with where I’m going, but also where I am at.
When I’m feeling sad, or anxious about, slowly training this language as a habit is making accepting, letting go of, and giving myself what will help me discover and find happiness from negative feelings easier. It takes practise, and sometimes I fall into my ‘need’ habit, but this is because lessons keep repeating until they are learnt, and it can be very difficult to change an internal habit when externally the world and the people around me are the same. However, I find a new compassion for myself with each challenge, and create a stronger foundation for my mental health.
When I fall into the realm of ‘need’ it can be very easy to think that I must act, sometimes to train a new habit, creating a moment of space can be a perfect catalyst to help the process. A different friend encouraged me to practise a meditation where I stood in my room for 20 minutes with my arms raised, closed my eyes, and observed.
Reluctantly I set my timer and allowed my arms to raise. The 20 minutes went by. Thoughts of physical pain in my body, need to do something else, needs to change position,, past memories, fears for immediate future all arose. But then the 20 minutes ended. I dropped and relaxed my arms and listened to my body. Everything was okay. Despite my mind telling me the opposite a minute ago.
There is something to be recognised in sitting with the uncomfortable, and I now practise this meditation every now and then. The ongoing effect has been that I’ve realised I can push through my anxiety, that I am not my thoughts, or my pains, and that I have the power to redirect my mind. I’ve found that in my workouts I can push my body further than ever, and in rehearsals and classes I’ve been able to notice uncomfortable feelings, choose whether I want to act or accept them and then continue living in the present. This is an ongoing skill that I am excited to continue discovering.
I’ve realised that my anxieties, and sad emotions are not a bad thing. That they are an important part in my self development and in our society. The negative is something that drives us to develop as a species. It created music and technology to improve our well being and our ability to show compassion to one another. I do not need anything, I am enough in all I am and all I am not. I am excited to try new things, but equally appreciative of where I am. I am enough. You are too.
Lots of Love.
“We have a tendency to think in terms of doing and not in terms of being. We think that when we are not doing anything, we are wasting our time. But that is not true. Our time is first of all for us to be.To be what? To be alive, to be peaceful, to be joyful, to be loving. And that is what the world needs most.“
Ps: Thanks to the two amigos, that I mention in this blog. And to you for reading. ❤